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Nile Talk Forum: The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD): Under-Reported Issues on GERD Impacts on Sudan

This is a past event.

Friday, October 8, 2021 at 8:00am to 9:30am

Virtual Event

This forum brings experts in Nile and other transboundary river issues of the world to discuss experiences in diffusing tensions, sharing the common good, build trust and develop collaboration and cooperation.

Dr. Asaad Y. Shamseldin | The University of Auckland, New Zealand

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD): Under-Reported Issues on GERD Impacts on Sudan

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) is regarded as the largest hydropower project in Africa and the seventh largest hydro-power project in the world. It is constructed on the Blue Nile River near the Sudanese-Ethiopian border. The Blue Nile River is a major tributary of the River Nile contributing around 59% of the Nile River annual flow. The average annual flow of the River Nile is around 84 billion m3. The Blue Nile River is a transboundary river which originates from Ethiopia and flows through Sudan until it joins the White Nile (one of the main tributaries of the River Nile) at Khartoum (the capital of Sudan) to form the River Nile which eventually flows to Egypt. The GERD has a storage capacity of around 74 billion m3 and this approximately equates to 1.5 times the average annual flow of the Blue Nile. The GERD can have profound effects on the downstream countries given its large storage capacity relative to the average annual flow of the Blue Nile. This presentation will discuss several under-reported issues with regards to the GERD impacts on Sudan. These issues include the dam safety in terms of acceptable risks as well as the negative environmental and socioeconomics impacts on Sudan. These issues pose serious risks to Sudan and if these risks are not adequately managed this may lead to massive internal displacement of the Sudanese population. It has been noted in the report by the International Panel of Experts for GERD that some of the essential studies related to these issues have not been completed. Therefore, there is an urgent need to complete these studies.

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